Florida Equal Marriage Information Guide

This guide includes information on what you need to know to get married or have your marriage recognized in Florida.

What do I need to get a marriage license?

To obtain a marriage license, the couple must bring a photo identification, such as a driver’s license, state identification card, military identification card, or valid passport to their County Clerk’s Office.

Anyone who has been issued a Social Security number must provide it, but people do not need to carry their Social Security card. A person who is not a U.S. citizen may provide an “alien registration number” or another form of identification, such as a U.S. driver’s license number or foreign passport.

There is a fee of $93.50 for obtaining a marriage license. This can be reduced by completing a certified pre-marriage counseling course.

Where is my County Clerk’s office?

The State of Florida has created this list with the contact information for all 67 Florida County Clerks.

Can I get a license in a county other than where I live?

Yes, a Florida marriage license can be issued by any county, regardless of where you or your partner reside.

Do both people need to go to the clerk’s office to get the license?

In general, the answer is yes. If one of the persons to be married is unable to go in person because of illness or other reason, he or she should contact the clerk in advance to see if special arrangements can be made.

Will I be able to get married right away when I get my license?

Florida law requires Florida residents to wait three days between the issuance of a marriage license and the license taking effect. The 3-day waiting period does not apply if the applicants are non-residents.

The 3-day period can be avoided by completing a premarital orientation course or by filing a motion with the County Court alleging that the wait causes them hardship or distress.

Can I get married any time after receiving my license?

A Florida marriage license is valid for 60 days after it is issued. The marriage ceremony must take place before the 60 days have passed.

Can I get married in any county in Florida?

You should be able to do so. On January 1, the United States District Judge in our Equal Marriage case issued an “Order on the Scope of his Preliminary Decision,” which clarifies that the Constitution requires all Florida court clerks to begin issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples when the stay expires.

A Florida marriage license can be issued by any county, regardless of where you or your partner reside.

What if my county clerk’s office refuses or is not ready to issue licenses to same-sex couples when the stay expires?

If your county is not willing to offer marriage licenses to same-sex couples, please contact us using this form to let us know. The ACLU is committed to ensuring that gay and lesbian couples can obtain marriage licenses in all 67 Florida counties. On the other hand, if you are denied a marriage license, you may go to another Florida county to obtain a license.

Who can officiate at my wedding?

According to Florida law, “All regularly ordained ministers of the gospel or elders in fellowship with any church or other ordained clergy, and all judicial officers, including retired officers, circuit court clerks, and notaries public of this state” may perform a marriage.

We got married out of state, but we live in Florida. Do we need to remarry in Florida for the state to recognize our marriage?

No. If you were legally married in another state, you do not need to remarry in Florida. Our lawsuit specifically focuses on the issue of recognition of marriages performed outside of Florida, and your marriage must be recognized in the state when the stay in the case expires. In order to obtain certain benefits, however, such as adding your spouse to your health insurance plan or making certain pension and benefit designations, you will need to take action (usually by completing and submitting a form), just as you would be required to do for a male or female partner. The process for doing so will be the same as for a different sex couple.

If you are having difficulty having your marriage recognized by a state or other government agency after the court’s deferral has expired.

Do you want to get married on a tourist visa in the USA?

If you are in the United States (USA) as a tourist and you are considering getting married, but you have doubts about whether you can really do it, don’t worry, because the answer is “yes”, it is possible to get married with a tourist visa in that country.

However, it is quite another thing to be able to stay in the country legally and get a residence card by marriage. Here are some tips for getting married with a tourist visa in the United States.


In theory, when an alien who is in the U.S. as a tourist and a U.S. citizen gets married, the alien spouse should leave the country before his or her authorization to stay legally expires.

Then, if they so desire, the citizen would petition for their spouse through a consular process and while waiting outside the United States for the time of the consulate interview and the immigrant visa.

However, the truth is that in practice in many cases this does not happen and the foreign spouse decides to stay in the United States while the papers are being processed. To avoid very serious immigration problems, it is advisable to take into account


Avoid problems related to intent. When a person enters the United States as a tourist, he must necessarily have that intention: to walk around the country and before his visa or period of legal stay runs out, he must return to his country. And he must never enter the country with the intention of getting married.

A very different thing that can be admitted is that two people decide in an instant to get married. That is to say, when the foreigner arrived in the USA he did not have that idea, but love made him change his mind. But how can you avoid problems and be in a position to prove that the intention to marry did not exist before entering the country?

By following the 30/60 rule, a State Department rule that USCIS usually applies in cases of marriages between foreigners and American citizens. And that is to be understood:

When an adjustment of status by marriage is requested within 30 days of the alien’s arrival, it is presumed that he is acting in bad faith. In other words, that his intention was always to get married and that, therefore, the petition for adjustment of status should not be granted.

When the application is made between the 31st and 60th day there is a strong suspicion that there may have been an intention to marry from the beginning. In these cases one must expect a very thorough examination of the marriage and its intentions.


Be clear about the process of residency by marriage and all the requirements. The processing costs basically two parts. On the one hand, the petition per se and on the other hand the adjustment of status. But before starting, make sure that basic requirements are met, such as minimum income for sponsorship.


It is very important to take into account that while this process is taking place, the stay of the foreign spouse will probably be for several months not covered from an immigration point of view by a visa or by the ESTA. This is why you should not leave the United States.

It is recommended that you remain in the country either until you receive a green card or a permit known as an “advance parole.

If you leave before or without that authorization, you risk being barred from entering the U.S. at the border when you want to return. It is even advisable to consult an attorney if you should leave even with an advance parole.


Keep in mind that we are talking about marriage to an American citizen and never the case of a couple formed by foreign tourists and permanent residents.

These cases are very different, because if the tourist does not have the legal protection of the visa or the ESTA because he stays in the country longer than allowed, he will not be able to adjust his status and therefore will not be able to obtain residency within the United States. This is a big difference from an immigration standpoint.


Keep in mind that we always talk about tourists who entered with a visa or with ESTA. Nothing in this article applies to migrants who arrived in the United States without passing through immigration control, i.e., illegals. They can never adjust their status by marriage.


Problems can start in immigration control. It is perfectly possible that the immigration officer at the U.S. border (port, airport or land border) will prohibit the entry of a foreigner with a tourist visa when he suspects that his intention is to come to the country to get married.

The immigration officer always has a conversation with the person being processed (and it is recommended not to lie) and may conclude that they are coming to get married. In addition, they may open the luggage and discover suspicious things like the wedding dress, gifts, etc.

In these cases, Immigration has the right to prohibit the entry of the foreigner, no matter how many visas they have. It is very important to understand that in order to obtain the approval of a non-immigrant visa, such as a tourist visa, or its renewal, or the guarantee of being admitted when arriving at an immigration control of the United States, it is necessary to be, at all times, eligible for the visa and admissible to enter the USA.

Can I drive in the United States with a license from my country?

Many tourists ask if it is possible to drive in the United States with a license from your country, well, the answer is YES.You must take into consideration that in order to drive in the United States, you must be informed about the rules related to the country and driving; since the laws applied are strictly state and not federal.

That’s why we recommend you to check the traffic laws and rules in the pages of each state’s car department.

International Driving License in USA

Much is said about the international driving license in the USA, but many people do not know what it is. The international license is basically a driving license that serves and applies generally to any country.

That is why it is created in 10 languages and is valid in any country.

You have to take into account that it is not a necessary document, since in many countries you can drive with the same license obtained in the country of origin of the tourist, but if it is complementary, since it could help you to avoid problems when driving in the United States.

We recommend that if you want to make a trip to the United States or another country, you should always apply for an international driving license.

It is very important to know that the international driving license can only be processed from your country of residence, so once you are in the United States, you cannot apply for it.

Necessary information to apply for an international driving license

The personal data of the holder
Different driving licences held by the holder
This licence must always be used in conjunction with the driving licence of the holder in the country of origin.

They should be used together when driving abroad, as they complement each other.

Requirements and Information for Driving in the United States

It should be noted that the road laws of each state should be known, since some things that may be prohibited in one state may be allowed in another. For this reason, we insist on getting information about traffic laws and rules in the pages of the Department of Motor Vehicles of the state where you want to travel.

Omission or lack of knowledge of the laws will not exempt you from the responsibility of complying with them.

Illegal Driving in the United States

In all states, texting and using cell phone applications while driving is prohibited, as is talking on your cell phone while driving a car.
Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is strictly prohibited,
If you drive a rental car, the car must be fully insured. You must also report who will be driving the car.
If you are driving a friend or family member’s car, you should contact your insurance company for coverage and permission to drive the car.
It is very important to understand that driving in the United States with a foreign license or international driving permit does not exempt you from assuming responsibility for your actions under the established laws of the country.

If you are fined, it is very important to pay the fine immediately to avoid future problems.

Requirements for driving in the United States:

Minimum age to drive (16 years old).
You must be 21 or older to rent a car.
To have a valid foreign license.
Carry your passport or copy of it.
Have an insurance policy.
Know the most common traffic signs in the United States.
Respect the speed limit.

Foreign driver’s license for all visas

It is important to mention that anyone who travels to the United States, regardless of the visa they apply for (tourist visa, work visa, study visa, etc.) may apply for a foreign driver’s license in the USA. It is possible that depending on the state for which you want to apply for such a driver’s license, you may be asked for some extra documentation.

In the case of students, it is important to consult with the officer in charge of the students, which are the necessary requirements since in some states they ask for at least six months to expire the I-20 document.

Foreigners with investment or work visas can apply for a driver’s license, the documentation will depend on each state.

It should be noted that the license is valid for a period of six months to one year, it should be mentioned that once the license expires, it can be renewed again.

It is very important to have absolute knowledge of the local traffic rules and to take into account the responsibility that it means to drive a car, since we are not only responsible for our lives, but also, for the people around us. At the same time, it is important to avoid any possibility of accident, since health care for tourists is very expensive in the United States if you do not have prior insurance.

How to get a driver’s license in the USA

The driving record in the United States of America is perhaps one of the nation’s most important, if not the most relevant, document. All persons over the age of 16 should possess it in order to complement the list of rights and duties included in the statutes of the country of North America.

In fact, not only does it function as a guarantee to drive a car, it also serves as a form of identification in general, since it has been an ID. It can be used for check cashing, opening bank accounts, traveling and as proof of age.

Now, in the United States, there is no single driving ID issued nationwide. On the contrary, driver’s licenses are issued by state, that is to say, states, but they have national validity. It is also valid in countries such as Canada.


There are certain regular guidelines for the acquisition of this document, among which are the age of majority, a written test, a driving test and a vision test. However, each state has its own requirements, so the necessary documentation to be submitted at the time of application will vary.

Before going to the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), a pre-application for a license must be made online. You can also go to the DMV to make an appointment or make a phone call.

You must prove that you live in the state where you are applying for the license with a utility bill.

The documents required and that must be presented at the time of testing are Social Security number or Green Card if you are an immigrant; valid passport; driver’s license (if you have one); I94 Employment Authorization Card and a secondary document which may be a birth certificate, life insurance policy or baptismal certificate.

Types of Licenses

There are 5 types of driver’s licenses, and each one allows you to drive different types of vehicles. They are divided into categories and all have the same basic general requirements, which would be to be of legal age and to have the three general vision, hearing and driving tests.

  • Category A: Allows you to drive commercial vehicles that weigh more than 26,000 pounds.
  • Category B: Like Category A, allows driving commercial motor vehicles, but weighing 26,001 pounds or more.
  • Category C: Allows the citizen to drive vehicles that carry hazardous materials or cars that are designed to transport more than 15 people and that weigh less than 26,001 pounds.
  • Category D: Is the license to drive a truck or tractor-trailer up to 8,000 pounds. For this document, an additional test on the traffic rules for class D must be taken.
  • Category E: Allows you to drive passenger cars, 15-passenger vans and light trucks weighing less than 8,000 pounds. In addition, you must take an additional test on the traffic rules for class E.
  • Category E restricted: This license is a driving permit for those under 18 years old. The minimum age to apply is 15. And they must be held for at least 12 months without having received an infraction.

Once you have obtained the license in the place where you reside you can request a transfer so that you can use it in another state, but it is necessary to carry out all the tests made previously during the obtaining of the document.